For investment management firms, growth can bring unexpected challenges. Expanding a firm’s investment strategies into new markets and asset classes obliges adherence to a longer list of regulatory guidelines. Adding new investors and launching new funds means firms need more controls around and trust in their central firm data, greater transparency into the lifecycle of data creation and enhanced risk management processes.

To establish a sustainable foundation for future growth, firms are taking a closer look at how the market data for the assets they are invested in as well as the trading and account-level data can be used to create a competitive advantage.

Bloomberg recently explored this at the 2014 Buy-side Forum, which was hosted by Bloomberg AIM, Bloomberg’s portfolio, trading and operations management platform that is used by 700 buy-side firms globally. The forum convened chief information, operations, compliance and risk officers representing more than 150 investment management firms from around the world. Attendees heard relevant perspectives on how the industry is evaluating best practices for data management. In particular, the discussion focused on the advantages of centralizing the storage and management of enterprise data so that it can be accessed across the firm’s investment process.

Participants agreed that data can provide a critical competitive advantage, when data management is done correctly and for many participants, this means managing the data centrally

Not surprisingly, a survey conducted during the event shows that buy-side investment firms are looking to make investments that will put their firm and market data at the center of their firm. When attendees were asked how they were addressing data management, more than half said they were looking to implement either a single comprehensive platform (30%) to operate as the single source of trusted data or implementing an enterprise data management (or EDM) solution (24%).

So what’s the bottom line? Major investment management firms that use Bloomberg AIM are telling us that data impacts their entire enterprise. Thus, solutions that manage and organize reliable data sets have far reaching benefits across their organizations. Superior data brings peace of mind while it helps reduce costs and improve efficiency. Firms that figure out how to improve data quality will be better able to deploy new strategies, reduce costs and improve performance.

– by Dan Matthies, Global Head of Bloomberg’s Buy-side OMS System, Bloomberg AIM

Panelists at Bloomberg AIM's 2014 Buy-Side Forum discussed how buy-side firms can generate more value from the data while managing the challenge of doing more with less.

Panelists at Bloomberg AIM’s 2014 Buy-Side Forum discussed how buy-side firms can generate more value from the data while managing the challenge of doing more with less.